The first season of She-Ra and the Princesses of Power introduced the world of the Etheria and war between the Horde and the Resistance. Now that Season 2 is streaming on Netflix, viewers get to further explore the characters, particularly their relationships with each other. Through battle planning, visiting a haunted village and even meeting someone’s parents for the first time, She-Ra once again has plenty of laughs and heartwarming moments.
CBR spoke with showrunner Noelle Stevenson about the significant relationships introduced, and built upon, in Season 2.
CBR: The final episode of the season features Bow’s dads, and his struggle to tell his dads the truth of who he really is. It’s a truly heartwarming episode, and I’m curious to know your thought process in planning this episode as well its placement at the end of the season.
Noelle Stevenson: I definitely planned for Bow to have two dads. The question became how we were going to reveal that. I felt that we had an opportunity with how mysterious Bow’s past had been up until that point to play on Adora and Glimmer’s expectations of who he is and where he had come from and to show that his dads are so normal. He might have two fathers, but in so many ways, they are sort of a mundane family. As Glimmer says, so nice and normal.
But [Adora and Glimmer] both still have all these conflicted feelings about where he came from and who he is. We wanted to show that Bow’s background is less angsty than some of our other characters, but it shows that even then, feeling like you can’t be who you truly are around your family, that still has an impact on you. Those feelings are still real and important to explore.
As for the placement, that’s how it shook out. We wanted them to get plot points from characters who knew a lot about First Ones mythology and so that was just how it came to be.
There’s an interesting mirror as far as parents because we have Bow’s parents who are just so normal and lovely, and then we have Shadow Weaver and her treatment of Catra and Adora when they were growing up. Was that intentional?
I think that there was a lot of exploration of authority figures and the impact they have on us on the show. Most of our main characters are younger are just at the very beginning of adulthood and they’re all figuring out who they are and who they want to be apart from these people who shaped them as they were growing up. But we also get into how it’s not so easy.
You don’t just get to cut ties with somebody who was influential to you when you were younger. How you were raised stays with you forever whether you want it to or not. So, even though our characters are striving for self-individuation and to be independent and to choose their own path — this is not just something they get to ignore or forget about. And so that is something that we wanted to explore in a very thoughtful way.
Is there a connection between Shadow Weaver’s mistreatment of Catra to Catra’s inability to open up to other characters, particularly with Scorpia?
For sure. I think Catra, unfortunately, does still really care about Shadow Weaver’s opinion of her. I think that she is looking for validation and from a place that isn’t the place she should be looking for validation from. For her, that’s the only thing that matters to her right now. So even though she would never admit it, she does want love and acceptance, and she’s not able to accept it from this point from Scorpia who’s offering it to her just with a totally open and sincere heart.
Catra is not ready at this point to open herself up to that. Again, she gets very shaped by her past with Shadow Weaver and with Adora, and I think she has quite a bit of work to do before she is ready to accept love at all.
Why is Scorpia so enamored with Catra when Catra really hasn’t given her that much in return?
I think that Scorpia is a very earnest and very sincere character, and one of her qualities that she’s the proudest of is that she’s loyal. So, just the fact that she’s with the Horde at all — like, we see her do bad things, fight the good guys, hurt them — but she’s doing it out of loyalty. She’s doing it because she wants to protect Catra. She’s doing it because she wants to stop people from hurting her.
She’s really fallen for Catra. She thinks she can fix Catra. She thinks that if she can just give her love to Catra that that will transform Catra into someone who’s capable of giving love back. Obviously, there’s a lot more with where Catra is right now in order for that to happen, but this is somebody that she just really latched on to. And I think it’s relatable for anybody who’s ever had those types of feelings for someone else who didn’t necessarily reciprocate. Catra just isn’t — she’s isn’t quite the person Scorpia thinks she is.
Continuing with the Horde, we get more of Shadow Weaver’s backstory with Glimmer’s dad in the second season, making her a more complex villain. Will we be getting the same treatment with Lord Hordak too, or is he going to remain a truly evil character?
We’re definitely going to see more of Hordak. Even just from Season 1 when he was a distant shadowy figure to Season 2, we’re already starting to see a little bit of his weaknesses, of his insecurities. Because at the end of the day, in Season 1 he seemed so separate from everyone else and now we're really seeing that he’s not that separate from them. He’s also sort of driven by his own hubris by his own insecurities in so many ways. So, it’s not that we’re delving into every character’s backstory, but there’s definitely more to come from Hordak.
She-Ra and the Princesses of Power Season 2 is now streaming on Netflix.